Treasure Island

Ralph Waldo Emerson

(1803 - 1882 / Boston / United States)

The Day's Ration


When I was born,
From all the seas of strength Fate filled a chalice,
Saying, This be thy portion, child; this chalice,
Less than a lily's, thou shalt daily draw
From my great arteries; nor less, nor more.
All substances the cunning chemist Time
Melts down into that liquor of my life,
Friends, foes, joys, fortunes, beauty, and disgust,
And whether I am angry or content,
Indebted or insulted, loved or hurt,
All he distils into sidereal wine,
And brims my little cup; heedless, alas!
Of all he sheds how little it will hold,
How much runs over on the desert sands.
If a new muse draw me with splendid ray,
And I uplift myself into her heaven,
The needs of the first sight absorb my blood,
And all the following hours of the day
Drag a ridiculous age.
To-day, when friends approach, and every hour
Brings book or starbright scroll of genius,
The tiny cup will hold not a bead more,
And all the costly liquor runs to waste,
Nor gives the jealous time one diamond drop
So to be husbanded for poorer days.
Why need I volumes, if one word suffice?
Why need I galleries, when a pupil's draught
After the master's sketch, fills and o'erfills
My apprehension? Why should I roam,
Who cannot circumnavigate the sea
Of thoughts and things at home, but still adjourn
The nearest matters to another moon?
Why see new men
Who have not understood the old?

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

Do you like this poem?
1 person liked.
0 person did not like.

What do you think this poem is about?



Read poems about / on: strength, fate, child, moon, beauty, heaven, home, sea, time, husband, running, friend, children

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (The Day's Ration by Ralph Waldo Emerson )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Love is tolerance, Somanathan Iyer
  2. Flattered lives, Somanathan Iyer
  3. Live Paintings, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  4. Colorless Light, Sandra Feldman
  5. The ragged men of Indian English poetry, Bijay Kant Dubey
  6. Thoughts, nicholle gibson
  7. PH: Sin: The Wages Of Sin, Brian Johnston
  8. Ideals Envisioned, Lawrence S. Pertillar
  9. America Radicalized, Is It Poetry
  10. Just before Midnight, Frank Avon

Poem of the Day

poet Henry Vaughan

They are all gone into the world of light!
And I alone sit ling'ring here;
Their very memory is fair and bright,
And my sad thoughts doth clear.

...... Read complete »

   

Trending Poems

  1. 04 Tongues Made Of Glass, Shaun Shane
  2. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  3. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  4. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
  5. If, Rudyard Kipling
  6. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  7. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  8. Where The Mind Is Without Fear, Rabindranath Tagore
  9. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
  10. Dreams, Langston Hughes

Trending Poets

[Hata Bildir]